Facebook Ads vs Boosted Facebook Posts, Which One To Use?

Jul 19, 2023 | All, Digital Ads, Marketing, Social Media

Should you choose Facebook Ads or Boosted Facebook Posts? We uncover the secrets in this detailed blog and help you make the right choice based on your goals.

If you plan to promote your business on social media, Facebook is THE PLATFORM you must first focus on. It is the numero uno social media platform with nearly three billion users. Whether it is user reach, demographic targeting, or behavioral marketing, no other platform offers you the same kind of incentives as Facebook.

Facebook Ads vs Boosted Facebook Posts, Which One To Use?

However, advertising on Facebook or any other social media platform can be intimidating for any first-timer. If you are new to Facebook advertising, you must choose between Facebook Ads and Boosted Facebook Posts. Both options share a lot in common and can be effective in their own right. Understanding their differences and knowing when to use each is crucial for maximizing your marketing efforts.

Choosing between Facebook Ads and Boosted Facebook Posts is easier said than done. It is similar to choosing between a Compact SUV and a Crossover if you are to use an analogy from the auto industry. Many customers find it extremely difficult even if they start comparing the pros and cons. Which is best suited for your needs? Which one of them has an easier learning curve? Let us try and find answers to these questions.

Facebook Ads vs. Boosted Facebook Posts

First, we need to know the difference between Facebook Ads and Boosted Posts before we get down to answering which option is better for you. There is a lot that these two share in common, which is not surprising as they come from the same stable.

Facebook Ads are customizable advertising campaigns that provide extensive targeting options. You can create ads from scratch using the Facebook Ads Manager tool. It offers you complete control over your advertising and targeting. The insightful stats help you analyze the success of your campaign and take corrective measures when required.

Boosted Posts are a simplified version of Facebook Ads allowing you to promote your organic posts to a wider audience. It aims to engage people who like posts, comment on them, and share them within their network. While you see engagement with this strategy, it doesn’t necessarily translate into transactions, profits, or more brand equity.

Which one should you choose? There is no easy answer. As a social media marketing agency, we can say it all depends on your business goals and your expertise with Facebook advertising. If you are a newbie and looking for a one-off campaign, Boosted Posts is a low-hanging fruit. On the other hand, if you are looking at long-term goals – profitability, ROI, and brand building, Facebook Ads wins hands down.

Key Differences Between Facebook Ads and Boosted Facebook Posts

Campaign Objectives

The first major difference you notice is the campaign objectives. If you choose Boosted Posts, you will see only three broad objectives – React, Buy, and Connect.

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While this may be enough for a one-off viral post, Facebook Ads take the objective to a new level where you have 11 other options to customize your ads and improve engagement and conversion. Whether you want to increase brand awareness, share a product video, or generate leads, Facebook Ads let you manage your campaign at a granular level, which Facebook Boosted Posts fail to do.

A major downside of Boosted Posts is that your posts would be visible only to people who engage with your content (like, share, comment). Hence, you aren’t likely to get fresh eyeballs on your post or reach out to those in your network who don’t engage with your posts. This won’t serve your purpose in most cases, will it?

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Campaign Reach

Next, we come to the reach of your campaign, and there are no prizes for guessing that Facebook Ads wins hands down. We have already touched upon it in the earlier point where we said that Boosted Posts are visible to people who have engaged with your posts earlier. If you define geo-targeting parameters in each of these, you will invariably find that you can reach a wider audience with Ads compared to Boosted Posts. We don’t need to tell you what you should choose, do we?

Ease of Use

Boosted Posts do have their advantage when it comes to ease of use. You can boost a post anytime and require very little technical knowledge. Since there are fewer campaign objectives options, it is easier to boost a post than create an ad where you need to define many parameters to ensure higher engagement and a better ROI. However, it all comes at a huge cost, as you have to sacrifice reach, engagement, and flexibility.


You want every dollar spent in the campaign to be useful and target the right people. It is one area where Facebook Ads score big over Boosted Posts. The Facebook Ads Manager offers you tons of targeting options that ensure the right people see your ads. Whether it is age, language spoken, sex, or people on the Facebook app instead of the website, the Ads Manager would leave you spellbound with the targeting options. If you want to leave out all the Johns and target all the Janes, Facebook Ads is the option to choose.

Placement of Ads       

We don’t need to educate you on the importance of ad placement. Choose Facebook Boosted Posts, and you have three options – Facebook, Instagram, and Messenger. Depending on the option you choose, your boosted post will appear. You don’t have more options, take it or leave it. With Facebook Ads, you can choose between Feeds, Stories, In-Stream, Searches, Messages, Articles, Apps, and dozens of other sub-categories. For example, if you want your ad to appear on Facebook Stories and Instagram Explore but not on Instagram Stories, you have the power to choose ad placement.

Ad Budget and Schedule

If you opt for Boosted Posts, you need to define only three things – the number of days, the total budget, and the end date. While this may look easy, these options are limiting when you compare them to Facebook Ads. You can define bid control, the frequency of your ads when to get charged, and the time of day the ads are visible. You can pause an ad campaign if you choose.

Display of Ads

With Boost Posts, you don’t have any option of customizing how your ad would be displayed. It will appear the same as any other post on Facebook. So, you don’t have to worry about any display options, as there are none! Switch over to Facebook Ads, and you have many options. Whether you want a Carousel Ads, Single Image, or Videos, you can choose a display format based on the content. It lets you differentiate your ad from an ordinary post, attracting eyeballs easily. You can do an A/B test of your ads and choose the most attractive format for your audience.

When To Use?  

Facebook Ads is a clear winner when it comes to features and possibilities. Does that mean there is no place for Boosted Ads? As we said in the beginning, both have their place, and you must choose the right option based on your goals. Here’s a small checklist that will help you make the right choice.

Use Boosted Posts When…         

  • You aim to increase engagement on a specific post or promote a time-sensitive offer.
  • You want to quickly boost the visibility of a post to a broader audience without extensive campaign setup.
  • You have a limited budget and want to allocate it towards enhancing the reach and interaction of your organic content.
  • Your in-house team doesn’t have the expertise to set up and manage a campaign.

Use Facebook Ads When…          

  • You have specific marketing objectives and want more control over your campaigns to boost ROI
  • You want to reach a highly targeted audience, leverage advanced targeting options, and reduce average acquisition costs.
  • You aim to drive conversions like website visits, sign-ups, purchases, or lead generation and build a competitive edge.
  • You have the time and resources to create and manage custom ad campaigns.
  • You are in the long haul and looking to leverage the power of Facebook’s reach to boost your brand equity.

The Final Thoughts

To summarize, Facebook Ads and Boosted Facebook Posts offer unique benefits depending on your marketing goals and resources. The odds are tilted in favor of Facebook ads, though. If you are looking at social media marketing from a revenue generation and brand-building perspective, you must choose Ads over Boosted Posts. Facebook Boosted Post can be a good starting point for your future Ad Campaign. While it requires technical know-how, the rewards from Facebook Ads are hard to ignore in the long run.

If you are looking for a professional team, we fit the bill perfectly. At Cyrusson Inc., we specialize in delivering top-notch social media marketing services tailored to your unique business needs. Our experts will create compelling campaigns, engage your audience, and maximize your brand’s visibility on Facebook and other social media platforms. Don’t miss out on the opportunity.

Contact us today at 415-228-9969 to book a free consultation or to request a proposal.

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